Saturday, August 30, 2008

It is a truth universally acknowledged...

American Book Review posts its 100 Best First Lines from Novels.

My favorite?

3. A screaming comes across the sky. —Thomas Pynchon, Gravity's Rainbow (1973)

Thursday, August 28, 2008

The Lag

Sorry I haven't posted much lately - but here's why:

I'm moving to New York this weekend! Once I get settled, I'll be back to normal posting hopefully.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

There she is....Miss Vatican

An Italian priest is organizing a beauty contest for nuns.

"We are not going to parade nuns in bathing suits," Rungi said by telephone from his town of Mondragone. "But being ugly is not a requirement for becoming a nun. External beauty is gift from God, and we mustn't hide it."

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Not Photoshopped

A collection of pictures that look fake, but aren't.

(Photo from Flickr user Kevin O'Mara)

Bigfoot Busted

Well, it had to happen, I guess.

AP: You're Old

A look at incoming college freshmen, most of whom were born in 1990.

(Perspective: The movie "Home Alone" came out in 1990.)


Ann Althouse wonders if you're still watching the Olympics after the season finale of The Michael Phelps Show, and also - do you prefer sports where someone crosses a line or touches a wall first or receives a mystical score from a panel of judges and experts who meet in a circle at midnight wearing hoods around a fire?

I made up a bit of the last part, but my sympathies are with the crossing the line crowd (former track and cross-country athlete, what did you expect?); however, Ann's post got me thinking - do women prefer sports like gymnastics or figure skating because they're more complex and allow for infinite variety or difficulty? Is the feminine brain somehow programmed to more readily accept 7.5 6.5 7.5 7.0 7.5 3.0 7.0 than the masculine head-fluff?

I really want to say yes, but then again, my favorite sport involves a huge panel of experts and journalists voting for their favorite at the end of the season to award a mythical national championship - and I wouldn't change it for anything in the world.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Forever Sunset

The sun never really sets when you chase it around the world. This website continually shows a sunset image that corresponds to a location where the sun is currently setting.

Sunday, August 17, 2008


I think "Cone of Silence" will enter the lexicon of American political lore. There's speculation that McCain heard some of Obama's answers and was not at Saddleback in Rick Warren's "cone of silence," but actually just leaving his hotel.

Of course, this is all on the honor system, but I would be very, very, very naive to assume he or someone on his staff didn't see the broadcast and prep him in advance.

Other points:

-Rick Warren admitted that he wasn't at the church when Obama began his session

-McCain mentioned something about getting to the Supreme Court question, which suggests he knew it was coming

-McCain's answers were very quick and concise, very different than his normal style to those who have followed him. There's no doubt he performed well and wowed the audience, but he was almost answering them before Warren finished. A lot of the anecdotes and responses seemed a little canned and quick to be truly off-the-cuff.

-To be fair, Obama mentioned that he had "cheated" and thought about something beforehand, but why would he say cheat if it wasn't a joke?

I think there's a lot more to come out on this. The point isn't to complain that McCain must have obviously cheated since he did so well - the point is that Rick Warren gave us the impression that McCain would not be able to hear Obama's answers or his questions and that is now in doubt. Lame.

Yay! Commence partisan bickering!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Happy 18000 Hits!

Did I refresh the page at 17999 to get to that number? Yes I did.

Change You Can Believe In

Like a very trustworthy dime, or something. Anyways, you may have noticed some different things on the blog. I meant to initiate this about a year ago, but never had the time: you're seeing the beginning of a multi-pronged new media launch for Caught on the Bound. Comics! Random scans! And coming soon - video!

Let me know what you think. Once things get into a groove, I think it will shake things up around here nicely and give you a break from my lackluster posting. I've been posting more often, but usually it's more of a link log and nothing substantive. Well, I'm working on that and still tinkering around with the tone of this blog. Fortunately, I seem to have hit upon a consistent string of updating the past few months and I don't see that faltering anytime soon.

Hope you're enjoying the blog!

How Michael Phelps Did It

Bill Murray Jumps Out of Plane

Lives to joke about it.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Caught on the Bound - The Comic Strip

Follow-up on Bigfoot(?)

I was able to catch some of the press conference held regarding the possible Bigfoot discovery. In short, it was kind of ridiculous. The "evidence" was, of course, a Blobsquatch - the usual indistinguishable blob/shadowy figure/object barely discernible in the image and some DNA results which came back as undetermined/human/opossum.

The whole thing was ludicrously cloak-and-dagger: no definitive proof, no real scientists on hand and certainly no body on display.

There were a couple of "gotcha!" moments, too. One savvy reporter asked why the men had cameras with them while hiking out in the middle of northern Georgia. The alleged co-discoverer appeared to freeze for a moment, then mumbled about there being all kinds of animals to look at and film.

You could hear a few reporters shouting "hoax!" or questioning aloud, "Why would they take cameras up there, but not guns?" This just isn't going to end well.

Quite hilarious and truly worthy of a blog post - but nothing more until we see ourselves some BODY.


Don't Worry, Obama Not Anti-Christ

What does it say about this election when authors of fiction have to debunk crackpot theories that Obama is the Anti-Christ?

Request for NBC

Can you please televise Michael Phelps eating any of his 4000-calorie meals? I just want to see how it's done.

"For breakfast: three fried egg sandwiches, with cheese, tomatoes, lettuce, fried onions and mayonnaise, followed by three chocolate-chip pancakes; a five-egg omelette; three sugar-coated slices of French toast and a bowl of grits (a maize-based porridge), washed down with two cups of coffee."

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Georgian Bigfoot?

While one Georgia is at the center of international conflict, another may have produced Bigfoot. Apparently, a few guys in northern Georgia (The Peach State) are going to be presenting evidence in Palo Alto, California tomorrow.

Lots of skepticism here. Odd that they didn't go straight to a scientist with this - but who knows?

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Movie Letter Quiz

Can you identify a movie based on one letter from its poster?

I got 16. Post your score!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Praying for Rain

Focus on the Family prays for rain during Obama's speech. What would Jesus do?

The Olympic Story

Andy Borowitz pokes fun at the preponderance of human interest stories in NBC's Olympic coverage.

It's the one thing that really bothers me about the Olympics. The emphasis on storytelling and obsessing over a few athletes gets tedious. Sometimes a lesser-known athlete is profiled and you might think, "Hey! They talked about someone who wouldn't otherwise get a lot of attention for her table tennis talent!" only to have it revealed that she is the mother of 26 children, beat back cancer six times and saved her Iowa town from an evil spectral phantasm by challenging it to a table tennis match and winning.

I love cheering for the USA, but I cringe when the commentary gets a little one-sided. For example, I was watching the USA vs. Cuba beach volleyball match last night, and the announcers went into great detail about the U.S. players' love lives, surgical bandages, homes in California, etc. while never mentioning anything about the Cuban players. They said their names here and there, but never really discussed their background, ambitions or epic battles with things.

Additional Olympic thoughts: I want every major television coverage block SATURATED with table tennis, just for a day or two to see the reaction. That would be awesome.

Cup Stacking

Abort, Retry, Fail?

Y/N? It's a real picture from the opening ceremonies in Beijing - the uncompromising dead-end of all computer problems: the Blue Screen of Death.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Clinton Memo Dump

The Atlantic goes live with a collection of internal memos from Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign. The results? It turns out there was a lot of xenophobia and forgetting about things like delegates, money and Obama. Other than that, it's hard to see what went wrong!


John McCain borrows a page from the "College Student Panicking at 3 AM" Playbook. I think the four or five dudes that sit in a closet and write all the Wikipedia entries should run the world. That way, if you disagree with some foreign policy or tax issue, you can just click edit and fix it.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Virtual iPhone

If you don't have an iPhone, like me, you can try an online version here. It's apparently missing a lot of features, but still pretty cool.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

The Other Woman From the Beyond

Rielle Hunter, newly-revealed mistress of John Edwards, is a moonbat.

The Greatest Rickroll Ever?

More on Rickrolling here.


Angels 10, Yankees 5

Montauk Monster Follow-up

It's not over yet. Rumors of a hoax or viral marketing campaign swirl.

Who Discovered What Now?

The "discovery" of a small snake in Barbados is causing some controversy among the locals.

Barbados: "We totally knew about that snake! My grandmother showed it to me!"

Scientists: "Discovery means scientifically studied for the first time!"

Barbados: "Oh yeah? Well we don't need foreigners coming into our backyard and telling us what's what!"

Scientists: "Snakes are apolitical!"

Barbados: "You act like you own the snake!"

Scientists: "It's the size of a quarter, isn't that cool?"

Barbados: "OH! Couldn't compare it to one of our coins, could you!"


Notre Dame Student Wins First Gold for U.S.

Mariel Zagunis wins gold in the women's individual saber! Mariel was a year behind me and arrived on campus shortly after winning gold at the 2004 games. Her dorm welcomed her with a giant banner - not bad for a freshman.

She took a break to focus on this:

"Zagunis is an anthropology major at the University of Notre Dame. She has put school on hold since the winter of 2006 to focus on defending her Olympic title after feeling she was losing her sharpness because of too much homework.

She will complete her degree after the Games.

“Being at a prestigious, hard university, I wouldn’t be able to do both well and so I think taking the time off was very important for me,” she said. “I just went home to Portland. That was the only way I was going to have a result like this again."

Bernie Mac (1957 - 2008)

Sad to hear of his passing. Strangely, I saw Bernie Mac in New York a few weeks ago out and about in public.

You can never truly know celebrities, but Bernie seemed like a genuinely good guy and he certainly entertained me with his stand-up and movie performances. Rest in peace.

George Orwell Blogs

This is a brilliant idea: The Orwell Prize will be posting George Orwell's diary from 1938-41 in blog form - Orwell will be blogging along with the rest of us!

I'd love to see more diaries/journals from well-known figures posted in this way. When you read an entry a day, you get a better sense of the time elapse and change that informs the writing and thinking. Can you imagine reading Anne Frank's diary on a day-by-day basis? I recently read Michael Palin's (of Monty Python) diary and would have loved to see it in a blog form.

Anyways, this gives me a great excuse to post a quote from Orwell's essay Politics and the English Language, in which he has some fun and translates a well-known passage from Ecclesiastes into "modern English of the worst sort":

"I returned and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all."
"Objective considerations of contemporary phenomena compel the conclusion that success or failure in competitive activities exhibits no tendency to be commensurate with innate capacity, but that a considerable element of the unpredictable must invariably be taken into account."

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Study: Studies About Caffeine Are All Correct or Something

You know how a new study on caffeine comes out every week and contradicts the previous one? I do too. Let's end that.

Henchmen Needed

I swear Caught on the Bound did not post this on the London Craigslist:

"20-30 henchmen needed for moderately-sized supervillain organisation with large expansion potential (fortresses built into geological structures, corruption of government officials, possible genesis of 'nemesis' vigilante). Electrical theme."
OK, we thought about posting it, but someone beat us to it. They beat us bad...and they're going to pay.

Another Manhattan Project

An ecologist maps Manhattan as it would have appeared 400 years ago. Spoiler alert: there were no buildings. Or roads! The subway was there, but you couldn't enter it because of all the dirt in the way.

Cheerleaders Go Wild!

26 girls, ages 14-17, attending a cheerleading camp at the University of Texas crammed themselves into a dorm elevator.

Campus officials weren't amused.

"It's dangerous, actually," said a school police spokeswoman, Rhonda Weldon.
Age 14-17 is a dangerous, weird, peer-pressury time to be a girl, I hear. 8th grade seemed to be a big excuse for girls to congregate in judgmental gaggles and make boys feel outrageously awkward. Glad I spent most of that time playing chess in the library.

Cheerleaders in large groups have long been associated with stuff. That's all for this post, I think.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008


A nifty graphic from the NYT on Olympic torches since 1936. Note how curvy they're getting lately. My favorites: Rome 1960 and Salt Lake City 2002. I kind of like Beijing 2008, too.

The Montauk Monster a raccoon!

Monday, August 04, 2008

Purple Haze

Picked this up from 10 Things You Didn't Know About Classic Rock:

"In 1968 Jimi Hendrix bought a studio located in the 52 West Eight Street, Greewnwich Village, New York, with the idea of transforming it into a nightclub. His sound technician convinced him of turning it into a studio and in August 27th 1970 “Electric Lady” officially opened it’s doors. Both recording rooms haven’t changed a bit since Jimi jammed there (one still has the same paints hanging on the walls and sofas, and the other -Purple Haze- still has the purple console). When The Clash recorded “Sandinista!” there, they swear Jimi’s spirit added an extra guitar line in the album. That may sound weird (and stoned) but the truth is that doors close on their own, floors creak and a magic can be sensed in the air (or so they say)."

Britain from the Air

A new BBC series gives us some cool satellite imagery of London taxis, air traffic and telephone calls.

Calvin and (Steve) Jobs

Some fun at Steve Jobs' expense.

Trajan the movie font.

Because it's Monday and we need to shake things up

Title: A Flock of Seagulls - I Ran
Year: 1982
Why?: 1982

Morgan Freeman Injured in Car Accident

I hope he's OK. I don't think I've ever met a person who doesn't like Morgan Freeman. He was apparently joking with the rescue crew and some would-be photographers after the accident, so here's hoping for the best.

"I'm Batman!"

What is so hard to understand about this? Bruce Wayne, a well-known billionaire and Gotham celebrity, decides to disguise his voice with an intimidating fear-inducing growl when he dons a tricked-out suit of body armor. Would you rather have him use his smooth regular voice making snide remarks as he throws a guy off the roof? It would be like Captain Planet tossing the bad guys into the dumpster and saying something like, "Time to take out the trash!"

I guess I just don't see how Batman could effectively use any other kind of voice. Gee willickers.

Elsewhere in Cool Stuff...

John is gearing up for an interview with Charlie Kaufman and enjoying Gershwin juxtaposed with New York.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Superjumbo Touches Down on US Soil; Some Passengers Bathed

Exactly what my post title said. And this nugget:

"Some of us were lucky, we had showers before got off the airplane," Emirates President Tim Clark said, shortly after disembarking, losing no time in marketing the plane's two "shower spas," 14 first-class suites, bar and lounge.
The rest of "them" were packed in the cargo compartment sweating like hogs. I hope President Tim Clark didn't actually say "before got off the airplane" because that would be a baddest grammaritical err.

Translating Hollywood

An amusing article on movie title translations for overseas viewers.

"Local customs are also taken into account. Last year's comedy hit Knocked Up was given the gentler title Slightly Pregnant in Roman Catholic Peru and the gloriously blunt One Night, Big Belly in China."

NCAA Football Coaches' Poll Out

The season is coming, whether you like it or you love it. Here's the preseason coaches' poll. Where is Steve Spurrier's token vote for Duke? Notre Dame gets 5 votes; 4 of them from Charlie Weis, presumably. Nebraska receives a whopping 17 compared to an astronomically improbable, mindblowingly better and nearly infinitely superior, hard-hitting 1,438 for #1 Georgia.

The top ten, shamelessly copied and pasted from USA Today:

Georgia (22)
Southern California (14)

Ohio State (14)

Oklahoma (3)
Florida (5)
LSU (3)


West Virginia

Clemson is getting a lot of buzz this preseason. I have no idea why...I need to keep up more. Do they have a "secret weapon" athlete who has to be carted onto the field in a crate marked "DANGER" and wears a jersey with number "00" which stands for how many seconds you have to live? Like I said, I have no idea. But that would be awesome.